February’s job report showed declining payrolls since July of 2007, with the economy shedding another 36,000 jobs. This means that 8,180,000 people are now out of work in this downturn.
Yet, the market took this news in stride and managed even to see a glimmer of hope with a report of the moderation of the rate of loss and a steady unemployment number. Economists were predicting an even weaker number – in the 90,000 range – so the report was a positive surprise.
Even the weather was given credit for the positive, if muted, response. Severe snowstorms throughout the nation, but especially in the Northeast may have suppressed the employment picture somewhat.
The Securities Industry
The securities industry continues to slowly shed workers; reaching a new bottom in February with a loss of an additional 2,000 jobs for the month and 8,500 jobs for the new year.
Total loss since the downturn in this industry began in June of 2008 is 83,400 jobs lost or a bit over 9.5% of the workforce. The bounce from low employment numbers in September, ’09 has been reversed in the last two reports.